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In which I head home

I’m somewhere over the United States right now, I imagine, headed north (and to my tinies! and my husband! and reasonable weather!) but I wanted to take a moment to round up my favourite posts from the team for the past week so that no one misses them – they are so good.

I have loved walking the dust of Haiti with this group of people: they have been a gift to me, and they are a gift to the world.  And they make me laugh really hard.

Jennie Allen

When people feel familiar :: When people feel familiar… there are no longer excuses as to why we won’t help. We just help because we love them. We help because they are our friends.

Mary deMuth

4 Myths about Haiti :: Myth One: Haitians are lazy and are only looking for handouts. 

Jen Hatmaker

Mopping Haiti :: And something in my heart went…snap. I want to take the makeshift mop out of her tiny hands and break it into one million pieces. I want to scream and pull every hair out of my head. I want her to not be mopping the dirt outside of her filthy tent where she has lived for nearly two years. I want her not to be here in this terrifying place while my five babes are being tucked neatly into their safe, warm beds with their bellies full and our life the picture of security. I want her to stop mopping that damn dirt, because it is so futile and unfair and broken and everything, everything about this is wrong.  I am on the verge of rupturing, when she looks at me…and smiles. And the little ones behind her, they smile too.

Kristen Howerton

The Lack of a Family is the Greatest Form of Poverty :: Before I understood attachment issues, I would have been delighted to be in a situation where I could lavish affection on orphans I had just met. Now that I understand it better (and have kids of my own), I realize that this kind of affection-seeking-from-strangers behavior is a sign of a lack of attachment to parental figures.  Today, it broke my heart as these children burrowed their heads into my tummy and encircled me in their arms, embracing me like they were hungry for love.

Deidra Riggs

My View from Haiti: Can.Do. :: There is no disputing the fact that a challenge of this size is enough to make a person decide it’s not worth it; or that there aren’t enough resources; or that they need a bigger team, bank account, or skill set. In your ministry, your work, your vocation, your day-to-day, you may feel as if the challenge is insurmountable. If so, I’d like to share something Pastor St. Cyr shared with us today: “Don’t wait to go big. Do what you can. What you can do, matters.”

Duane Scott

when the world gives you a fistbump (and it changes your life):: Trying to hold it together because the last thing these children need are more tears, especially tears of a $3 Starbuck-guzzling American. I feel so disrespectful, peeking this way into their lives and the last thing I want to be is a poverty tourist so I shake hands with every frail man and hug every child and it all just feels so little.  I told myself I would never play the guilt-card of sad pictures coupled with sad stories but all day, the guilt-card is being played on me and it happens somewhere in the Tent City, I just… break.

Dan King

On the Importance of Coming Back :: This “coming back” thing is a theme that keeps popping up. Even yesterday as we walked around a small community in mountains we were told, “It’s okay to walk around here on your own, because they know us. They always say, ‘you are the people who always come back‘.”

Mike Rusch

Haiti Day One:: Haiti is a tragically, beautiful place & within a few short minutes I found myself asking “can Haiti truly be saved?”   If I’m truly honest, my immediate impression was no.  However, after today & witnessing the work taking place here, I’m starting to think it may actually be possible.

And one from me

In which God doesn’t look the same anymore :: A trio of little gap-toothed little girls gathered close to me, and they told me, through a translator, that they knew I was a mama. You know, I am most vulnerable about one part of my body: my baby-belly (three Bessey babies in 4 and a half years will do that to a girl), it’s the part of myself I want to hide and camouflage, but these girls, they rubbed my belly, and burrowed there, kissing it, they said, “you must be a mama” and the truth is yes, I’m marked as a mama, I know this, it shows, and it makes me soft, and I started to laugh because, well, what a joy.

I imagine I’ll write about Haiti again after I settle back into my routine, and have an opportunity to process a bit more. Right now: OVERWHELMED is a good word to describe me.

I want to get home, kiss my husband, and grab all of those babies to my mama-belly, go to bed, and just forget the Internet exists for a while.

See you in a bit then.

You can sponsor a child here.

You can make a one-time donation here.

Photos courtesy of the talented Molly Donovan Burpo and Scott WadeYou can follow our Twitter and Instagram feeds at #Help1Haiti

Haiti
  • Tara_pohlkottepress

    yes. rest. rejoin. reconnect. we’ll all be here hardly waiting for you to return. but until then? forget everything but what you are coming home too with the knowledge and ache you now possess.

  • Melissa

    I read your posts, and my reptilian brain responds yes, kind woman, of course you are reacting this way This is how kind-hearted, privileged people react. You’ll get over it. You either move there full-time or you get over it, perhaps with a layer of guilt.

    I have never re-read my journals from that summer in Manila, that time with the orphans and street kids. I have not read the journals from India, from the time with the women and their children in the red light district who don’t officially exist. I wrote things and then shut the books.

    I really wish you, dear lady, would stop making me think that it might be time to read those books.

    There are two things I don’t want to see in them: 1. the futility and pain and privileged anger and no seriously, Lord, WHY, and 2. me at that age, because good heavens, that girl was obnoxious. I don’t want to wonder whether I’m still her. I don’t want to read the posturing for the imaginary audience, or for the real Audience of One that I so desperately wanted to like me.

    I read your oh-so-sincere platitudes about do-what-you-can, and my black little soul whispers “we’ll see how long that lasts. You and your kids are going to need college money and new clothes and iPods and nice meals out, and you will bury that can-do, can-help attitude to let yourself buy those things.”

    I know the missing piece here is the Spirit, the Father, and the Son; their wind blowing through and empowering your story, my story, to not end here where my bruised heart has given up.

    So I look forward to reading about your journey, because it will not end here, because He is part of it and He will empower it.

    And I hope that one day soon I will have to courage to open those weathered books that are literally stained with tears, sweat, and blood. I stopped writing in journals altogether after I returned from one of those trips, when my heart broke. It may be that God is using you to open those chapters again, and coax me to ask Him why again, and to ask him what, what, what do you want from me, here in this middle class American life.

  • HisFireFly

    Thank you – simply for who you are in Him!

  • http://www.tothinkistocreate.com To Think Is To Create

    Praying safe travels and good, good, rest. See you in a bit. <3

  • http://www.lovewellblog.com/ Kelly @ Love Well

    Well done, Sarah. Rest and recoup, friend. Praying God’s refreshment over you this weekend. (And maybe some temps below 30.)

  • 1lori_1

    Thank you Sarah, what a beautiful way you captured what each blogger felt expressed. Bless you for stepping out and doing this, making a mark for eternity. God is smiling on Help One Now and all involved…..Lori

  • http://sacredeveryday.ca/ Jenn

    I cried my way through most of these yesterday, sacred words and holy ground. It brought me flat on my face and started a little fire in my heart again when getting through the drudgery of most days had become too much.